College Station, Texas, is 100 miles north of Houston and was largely unscathed by Hurricane Harvey. With dry roads, stocked groceries and heavy hearts, its Jewish denizens have been been doing their utmost to help their compatriots in Houston.

Led by Rabbi Yossi and Manya Lazaroff of the Rohr Chabad Jewish Center at Texas A&M, students have been shopping, packing and baking enough to fill a 20-foot truck. Right after the first shipment was sent down to Houston on Tuesday, another shipment was prepared for Wednesday.

“After days of sorrow and frustration,” said Dallas native Katie Resnick, who had joined a bake-athon at Chabad, “I could finally put a smile on my face knowing that I was helping those devastated by Hurricane Harvey.”

In addition to baking kosher cakes, brownies, cookies, challah, muffins and more for relief workers and people in need, students went out to purchase useful items for the supply truck. The truck was filled with packing boxes, sheetrock, box cutters, cleaning supplies, heavy-duty garbage bags, baby formula, diapers, eggs and other food staples.

Ironically, the fact that so many roads are still flooded meant that Rabbi Yossi Lazaroff and his two sons had an easy and quick drive into Houston with the laden truck.

“At times, the highway was narrowed down to one lane—the others were covered in water—and we saw abandoned cars submerged in water on many of the feeder roads, but we were able to make our delivery and get back home on Tuesday,” says the rabbi.

The delivery was deposited at the Chabad command center at Chabad Outreach, which has been converted into a soup kitchen, supply pantry and emergency help station for anyone in need.

While the rabbi drove, student volunteers were busy at Chabad’s kitchen preparing today’s shipment, which includes 300 meals to be distributed at the command center and other necessities.

Monday was slated to be the first day of the 2017-18 school year, but classes were canceled, allowing students to devote their time to helping those in need.

“I’m so proud that the Jewish Aggie Community came together to assist our friends and family in Houston,” says Resnick, “and I feel so much better knowing that I am helping those affected.”

To assist in the effort, donate to the hurricane relief fund here.

Katie Resnick and Manya Lazaroff prepare kosher baked goods to send to Houston.
Katie Resnick and Manya Lazaroff prepare kosher baked goods to send to Houston.